South River Falls Trail [CLOSED]

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Shenandoah National Park

South River Falls Trail is a 4.6 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Stanardsville, Virginia that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 4.6 miles Elevation Gain: 1,272 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

forest

river

views

waterfall

rocky

closed

Many trailheads in this park are closed due to COVID-19. Please check the park website for up to date info on which trails are accessible.

hiking
4 days ago

Great hike! Make sure to hike to the base!

hiking
muddy
6 days ago

With the park opening two days ago I decided to try this trail given it's high approval. I was rewarded with swift, raucous streams and a vigorous waterfall. Parking at the trailhed at 1030 (picnic area is closed due to the dempanic) I also parked at the South River Overlook. It is east to find the Yellow trail, the fire road, which starts only a few yards north along the road from the Overlook parking. However, I really wanted to hike the Red trail and did so, walking through the deserted picnic grounds. The trail was awesome and empty--I never encountered anyone until I reached the overlook. The trail was wet and muddy, with lots of little streams running down and across the trail. The view of the river was fantastic and worth the slippery hike. I went to the bottom on the fire road, which was much easier to hike but still muddy, and climbing the slippery rock trail (quite passable, just be careful, especially of the stinging nettles) to the base of the falls. I agree with the chorus--the best part of the trip. I went back up the yellow trail, a strenous rise. The Yellow trail is a road and much easier to hike, for sure.

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
bugs
2 months ago

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
scramble
2 months ago

Great hike! A bit rough after a rain with all the slippery rocks and mud but a challenging hike for newcomers and a burst workout for the more experienced.

hiking
muddy
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

Great trail that is well maintained. A little rocky but just a couple of muddy spots. Beautiful walk along the stream.

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

Very enjoyable 'social distancing' hike with only a few folks on the trail - and even fewer heading all the way to the base of the falls - which is so worth the extra hike. Waterfalls were beautiful and the base had a great area for sitting and enjoying the falls and the quiet. Easy to get to and ample parking at the trailhead. Would definitely do again.

hiking
2 months ago

Awesome trail done on Monday! Great weather and beautiful waterfall. Not a hard hike

hiking
2 months ago

beautiful waterfall

hiking
3 months ago

nice trail that follows along the river, alot of water flowing in the falls, pretty easy hike up the fire road, really enjoyed this hike would do again

hiking
3 months ago

Enjoyable trail through forest with a very active stream yesterday that eventually leads to a beautiful waterfall setting, an ideal place to lunch. I recommend doing the loop as opposed to the out and back, as indicated above in AllTrails because as you will notice, the elevation gain is much more severe.

hiking
icy
rocky
scramble
snow
3 months ago

If you want a gorgeous, but icy and cold hike in February this is a beautiful 5 mile loop (5 miles if you do the out and back to the falls base at the end)

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike! With recent rains, the falls were gushing! We went around the base of the falls and right up to them. Wide trail. I wore my running shoes and wished I’d opted for my trail shoes for more stability in the rockier sections. I would not exit the fire trail on the way back as the hike back up offers better views than hike down (same trail, you just see things from different view). Excellent trail for photography.

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

scramble
4 months ago

My favorite trail and waterfall in this part of the Shenandoah.

Great hike off of skyline drive. trail is clear and moderately challenging. falls in the winter are very pretty.

recorded South River Falls Trail

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

The waterfall view was great!

Great day hike ...... followed blue blaze to falls over look and then to base of falls, don’t cheat yourself make sure you go to the end. Came out following the fire road to AT, then to parking lot.

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

A nice trail. Some portions around the main water fall are unmarked. It is a strenuous hike back. Our total length was 4.8 miles. The sign says the loop is 3.3! The falls are beautiful though. A chilly hike at 29 deg today.

recorded South River Falls Trail

hiking
5 months ago

Perfect trail conditions today (12/18). Chilly but sunny, trail is clear of snow and ice, and the falls are gushing from the rain last week. Great moderate hike with a beautiful falls waiting for you at the bottom (and yes, all thumbs up for making it all the way down to the base). Highly recommend!

hiking
5 months ago

Elevation made the walk a little challenging, but overall a great trail. Well maintained. Going in I would recommend going straight at the fork to go down with “stair-like” rocks to make the decent easier. The falls were beautiful & worth the extra .5 miles. Took about 2 hours (without stops) Trails were good for dogs as well (of leash ) because of the elevation.

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